Just Me

Just Me
Look,I'm just sayin'

Thursday, December 8, 2016

promises and dreams

 At this time of year with Christmas right around the corner my thoughts always go to running pine and princess pine. That is because those are the two things Mom wanted for decorating and it was us children that provided that. We knew where to find those two items hidden in a secret wood. To this very day I can see the narrow path through that wood and know just where to step off it. The precious little princess pine standing in a meadow. Princess pine when in bloom will have a small brown stalk coming out of the center. It looks much like a strand of wheat. The deer will gently nibble that brown stalk off, it must be quite the treat for them. I have seen them do it and I was quite close to them. The treat must be awful good to distract them so.
 The running pine could be found not far away. As the name implies it runs along the ground. It is a vine like growth. All you need do is find the vine and start pulling. You may get a length six feet or more. It is the perfect garland. We children would begin to pull on it and be very careful not to break it. The game was to see who could get the longest strand. After we had gathered all the princess pine and running pine that was needed we would " sneak " it home. You see the secret wood was a game preserve. It was posted no hunting and no trespassing. Oh there was a narrow path, as I mentioned before , that dissected that small patch of wood and we went through it often. It didn't seem like a trespass to do so but leaving the path, now that was a different thing. And not only leaving the path but taking the foliage, well, it felt a bit criminal. You must remember that back in the 60's signs like that held power over us. We were taught to respect those things. We were also convinced we would be prosecuted, to the full extent of the law, should we be caught. It did add a bit of excitement to getting that stuff.
 Living on the edge of Northwest woods we did have access to other stuff as well. We could get white pine boughs, pieces of white birch, for making yule logs, holly and mistletoe. All we had to do was go for a walk through those woods. We often knew exactly where to go for what we needed as we played in those woods as well. There weren't many pine trees that made good Christmas trees so Dad usually bought one. We children did cut down a few small ones to use but that was rare. One year my eldest brother Harold cut down the neighbors tree. Mr Miller was a bit upset to say the least. That tree was a Leyland Cyprus, just one in a row of them on his property line. Dad bought a replacement for him in the spring.
 Christmas and decorating for it will always be princess pine, running pine and yule logs to me. I don't have any of those things now and haven't in years. I don't want imitation. I do think it is best left to memory. The gathering of those items, and Mom being pleased with what we had found, is one of those " hallmark " memories. Very sentimental. The memory is much better than the doing, if that makes any sense to you. I know that the little wood is still there and untouched. I can see it on Google earth. I suspect those pines are still there. Somehow I find that comforting. Could be I will walk that path again one day, even if it is " only in my dreams."  And that is what Christmas is all about, promises and dreams. When you are a child you dream of what will be. When you are grown, looking back, you are thankful for promises kept. And you discover that the promise is the most important thing of all.     
Princess Pine when the tops turn brown the deer seem to like it best